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Grain markets close mixed

Updated: 09/29/2010 @ 4:17pm

CHICAGO, Illinois (Agriculture.com)--After trading under a lot of pressure most of the session, the CME Group grain markets crawled their way back to close mixed Wednesday. Pressure remains from profit-taking and squaring up ahead of tomorrow's USDA Grain Stocks report, one analyst says.

The Dec corn futures closed  5 cents higher at $5.05. The Nov. soybean contract closed 11 cents lower at $10.99. The Dec. wheat futures settled 1 1/4 cents lower at $6.83 1/2.  The Dec. soyoil futures closed 49 points lower at $44.44. The Dec. soymeal futures contract settled $1.00 lower at $307.50 per short ton.

In the outside markets, the NYMEX crude oil is $1.63 per barrel higher, the dollar is lower, and the Dow Jones Industrials are down 20 points.

Tim Hannagan, PFGBest.com senior grain analyst, says today's lower prices are a result of end-of-month end-of-quarter profit-taking by funds. 

"This investment group was fat with profits off Sunday night's two-year high corn and bean prices. Funds earn bonuses on profits if taken before the month and quarter-ends," Hannagan says. 

Hannagan adds, "They (funds) also wanted to secure profits prior to the release of the Quarterly Stocks report, Thursday. Traders expect a neutral to negative stocks report.

On Friday, traders are expected to return to the market as buyers, Hannagan says. "One, we have had 9 consecutive higher Friday closes. Plus, harvest progress, on dry weather outlooks, will bring in more of those disappointing yields in the southern Delta and eastern Corn Belt. Two, there's a frost scare for the upper Midwest this weekend. This will surely spark short-covering and speculative buying Friday."

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